So you’re stressed and rushed off your feet. You’re hungry, or even hangry and you don’t care or have the time to consider the nutritional value of what you eat, you just want to quickly shove something down. You’re secretly hoping there’s chocolate left in the staffroom at your workplace. Sound like you?
When you are stressed your body is in flight or fight mode. When you are eating you need to be in rest and digest mode, in order for you to digest your food properly. So take a few moments to relax and contemplate your food before eating it. You will know when you eat too quickly or while you are stressed that you will suffer with indigestion and other uncomfortable symptoms.
What you eat provides nourishment for your body and brain. Eating while rushed is not ideal, so what you eat is even more important. Try to include protein, fat and complex carbohydrate at each meal. The protein and fats will help you to feel fuller for longer and will help to stabilize your blood sugar levels. If you have coffee, coke, chocolate, cake, or lollies as a quick ‘pick me up’, the spike in blood sugar will be short lived and followed by a slump, which will affect your energy levels and mood.
If you set aside some preparation time on the weekend it will help you to be organised and prepared throughout the week. Suggestions are:
Chop up vegetables like carrots, celery, cucumber, capsicum into strips.
Cook up some protein such as boiling some eggs or cooking some chicken pieces.
Boil up a grain such as quinoa or brown rice.
Roast some veges such as sweet potato, potato and pumpkin.
If you enjoy cooking you could get on a roll and make some savoury muffins or mini quiches, and a homemade sweet muffin or slice is always a better option than bought.
Make or purchase a dip such as hommous or pesto; or avocado can be used as a dip.
If you have a sweet tooth you could make up some protein balls made on dates, coconut, almond meal, chia, cacao etc on the weekend and throw a couple in each day.
In the morning it is so quick and easy to throw into a lunchbox some cut up vege sticks, cherry tomatoes, broccoli, an egg or some cooked chicken, and a dip or avocado. Add some nuts and crackers, and a piece of fruit or two and your day is sorted!
Alternatively you could throw in some cooked quinoa, broccoli, baby spinach, sweet potato, and egg or chicken. Drizzle over a simple sauce made by mixing yoghurt (dairy or coconut) with some turmeric. Or peanut butter with coconut milk and a touch of soy sauce.
Always carry snack food that will be nourishing and sustaining like vegetable sticks, fruit and nuts.
Of course keep hydrated with plenty of water and herbal teas 😊